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Old 09-18-2004, 10:12 PM   #1
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eaton 13 speed

Eureka! I found an old ford 700 semi truck at the scrap yard with an eaton 13 speed in it for $250.

Currently I have a Ford B700 with a brazialian 6.6 liter and an allison auto with non lock up converter.

I'm not really sure how the 13 speed shift patern works? Anyone ever drive one of these crazy things?

Perhaps this trans will keep me happy enough that i won't have to sell my bus. Or perhaps i'll use this bus as a test vehicle to see how i like the 13 speed and transplanting it into a bus with a larger engine in the future.

thanks for your input

Wish me luck ! this is gonna be a big project
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Old 09-18-2004, 10:30 PM   #2
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The 13 speed is a 9 speed in reality. You shift the lower gears without using the splitter, and the upper gears you can or not use the splitter. The main reason for it was on a semi where when you go up a hill, you have an intermediate (and easier) gear to hit when you are downshifting. It should work killer in your bus. It will shift like a 4 speed -- start in low, then shift to high -- and split then if you want to. So its granny low, 1 thru 4, then high 5 thru 9 with intermediate shifts if wanted.
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Old 09-19-2004, 09:01 PM   #3
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looks like i might have a buyer for my bus, so the trans swap is on hold until i find my "new" bus. I'll still buy the "new" trans and keep it at home until it's needed.

Here's my dilema. First off, I hate to spend money, but i want a bus with more engine than i have now. Ideally, a DT466 or a 9.0 liter. Those are hard to come by here in the flatlands of michigan.

I have to opportunity to purchase an international DT366 77 passenger carpenter very cheap from my local bus garage. It's the same place i got my current bus.

Do i purchase the cheap bus with an engine that is an upgrade from what i have now? Or do I hold out and keep searching for a bus with my dream engine?
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Old 09-22-2004, 04:20 PM   #4
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How bout buy this one, then buy the dream one! LOL -- You can always send one my way for storage!
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Old 09-23-2004, 03:01 PM   #5
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update: I found a bus with a 9.0 liter on ebay. I thought i really wanted a bus with that engine. After talking to Graig (he is the most knowledgable person i know when it comes to buses.) He said the 9.0 liter will keep running forever, but it actually makes less hp than the wimpy 6.6 liter already in my bus.

I guess about the only good engine left is the DT466, or the cat 3208.



How about transplanting an engine from a big truck? I've found two different cummins L10 (290-359 hp) that are for sale in big trucks for pretty cheap. I'd have to measure to see if it would fit.

This is getting entirely too complicated! and it's made worse by the fact that i'm very impatient.

IF I were giving advice to somebody else, I'd encourage them to wait until the bus they wanted came along.......and not to try to transplant an engine. But......Having a 300 horsepower cummings motor and a 13 speed trans would make a lot of skoolie owners envious!

With the proper rear end, the bus could go 100 mph! Not that I'd have reason to travel that speed in a bus.
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Old 09-23-2004, 03:13 PM   #6
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I don't think you realize how large the big rig engines really are. When you get it out of the truck you will realize it's not even close to a big block auto engine.
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Old 10-08-2004, 03:15 PM   #7
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my brain thinks a lot, but my hands seem to not work nearly as fast. I want a bus that goes faster, i'm still not sure how to accomplish the goal.

I'm a very confused boy.

I looked at a big cummings motor on an engine stand next to a 6.6 liter ford. Steve is correct, the big truck motor is huge in comparison. It would require a bit of magic to get that to fit in a bus. not to mention the weight difference. that might require new suspension components and who knows what else.

After much consideration, i've decided that big engine swap is a not a good idea. Too much time money energy and effort required.

I've been talking to many people about the 13 speed trans swap including a rear axle swap at the same time. both are part of the donor truck. A couple of people who's opinion i value very much say changing from a auto trans to a manual is far more work than i realize, and is not worth the effort.
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Old 10-08-2004, 03:28 PM   #8
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here are some options:

1. for $300 bucks i can buy a auxilliary trans that will bolt up to the bus and work just like an overdrive. ~16% increase in gear ratio.

2. For $250 bucks, plus the tow truck fees, i can bring home a big F700 (7000?) semi truck with a 13 speed eaton, and most likely a very nice gear ratio in the rear end. 3.56 perhaps? I could do an entire trans and an axle swap. Or i could start small, and just do an axle swap to see how the bus will do utilizing the current allison auto trans.

3. I could keep searching and possibly find a 2 speed rear end for a couple hundred bucks.

I don't know what to do!
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Old 01-21-2005, 06:52 PM   #9
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well....it's been a lot of months and i'm still thinking about the eaton 13 speed.

I think that this spring when it warms up i'm going to bring home the donor truck that has the 13 speed and the better gear ratio rear axle and get to work on the project. There are a couple vairables that might make the trans not bolt up to the engine, but most people who seem to be in the know tell me that it should slide in without any problems.....except the driveshaft length.

If i could do the entire project for under $1,000 and make it work properly, total i'd be really happy.

to be continued.......
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Old 01-21-2005, 11:15 PM   #10
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I have to suggest runing away from the 9.0 IH as fast as you can. You're better off with a gas engine.

If memory serves, the 7.8 Ford diesel (I've seen them as high as 275HP) is a bolt-in to replace the 6.6 litre. Look for F-700's, -800's, & -900's and F- and L-7000/8000/9000's as donors.

Maybe a Cummins B-series? 350HP from one of them isn't even slightly difficult.
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